Tuesday, December 4, 2012

IMAZ Race Report

Wow...what a race. Back in January I set the bar to break 11 hours. Mostly I wanted a better way that I could hold myself accountable in my training and focus so I put it out there where the world could see. When the day got close all I wanted was a smart race. Although I didn't break 11 hours I couldn't be more pleased with my race. Over 140.6 miles and to be that close, I know I did what I needed to do over these couple of months.
As it came closer to the race things started to unravel a tiny bit with the sleeping, sickness, and trying to pack while still managing my taper, work, life, etc. I kept it together as best as I could and kept reminding myself that it was already in the bank. 2 years ago I was at the race working it which turned out to be awesome because I knew my way around pretty well and knew the course somewhat all helping calm the nerves.
Getting right into it...
Swim: Damn crap coldness! I knew it is common for the swim to be cold here, but I didn't worry about it too much. I should of psyched myself up for it a little bit because I was really surprised when I got in at the warm up swim. I am not one for long sleeve wetsuits; my swimmer shoulders no likey, but that was not what caused me problems during the race. During the swim it kept feeling like I had something stuck to a couple of my toes. Out of the water I figured it out real quick. My feet were legitimately numb. Let just say T1 was solely focused on where I was stepping because I could not feel my feet.

My goal split for the swim was at the very least see 59:59 on the clock. I have been so very close the previous two times: Lake Placid: 1:00:19 and Wisconsin: 1:03:34. Welp I knew when I saw 32 minutes on my watch at about half way I was in some trouble. I picked it up but still fell short: Arizona: 1:00:46. Next time around I will try and get some more focused open water swims in before hand because I was just floppin around on that first half and wondering how there was still such a big group infront of me. That's because I was screwing around and not hauling. I came out 124 out of everyone though so it is what it is. I will break you 1 hour some day!
t1: Left my watch on "by accident" so it could stare at me the whole bike ride. Tried to warm up best I could and I was off as fast as my cold stumps could move me.

Bike: What I thought was going to be my weakest link of the weekend turned out to be my strongest. That is what this distance will do to you. Play games! I had a 55 minute PR. My goal split was 5:44:59 and I was almost 5 minutes under so I was happy. Well, more like I am happy now. At the moment I was just focusing on getting through the next 26.2. I really wanted to have a smart race and getting my nutrition down on the bike was key. I would say I hit my goal pretty well here, but as a true athlete I always see the room for improvement. I don't think I should be faster here, I just wish I would of eaten more on the last loop. I was shoveling it in thinking I had enough but it really took some time for it to kick in on my run which costed me some time I didn't want to give away and makes me think I could of taken more.
t2: I actually don't remember this at all except that I had to stop in to the ladies room twice. The first time to pee and the second time to take care of some lady business. I would love to see a dude try and do an Ironman when that mother nature lady from the Kotex commercial shows up.

Run: Per usual I started out too fast and had to get down to what felt like about a walk/small shuffle to hit the right pace. I have never really had a good Ironman marathon and knew to survive I needed to eat. I got some water and coke at the first aid station and eased into it as much as I could. By mile 2 I already knew I needed more fuel so I started taking in Gel and salt. It held on well for the first lap although the second half I just never felt like my nutrition kicked in. This picture must be right out of t2 because no chance my form looked that good on lap 2.
This is more likely lap 2.
Although I was consistently eating and drinking coke at every aid station and walking through them to get every ounce of nutrition it just didn't seem to hold on through the middle. When I hit 13.1 I was walking, but for some reason I knew it wasn't over. I wasn't going to give up like the last two times. I kept telling myself the more I run the sooner I will be done. Silly motivation, but it wasn't that I wanted to be done because I wanted it over this time; I wanted to be done, because I wanted to have done it right. I kept at it eating and drinking and salting and it finally came around. I saw my good buddy, Inch, around mile 20 who had ran/dragged me in at Wisconsin. 
He could tell I was feeling better and straight up told me it was now or never to take a chance. To go for it! What could I lose? From somewhere I got a second wind and picked up the pace. It felt amazing to be moving along and I just fed off of all the people that I was flying by. I got some great comments. It made me feel so much faster than I really was going, but when you have 6 miles left what you feel is all that matters. I kept seeing Inch along the way to move me along so it was great motivation and all I had to do was run it in. One of the last aid stations started playing the Rev3 Team's anthem and I loved it. I was flooded by all the support I had received from the staff and team throughout the year.
I was focused on taking more time and enjoying the finishing shoot, as I don't remember the last two, but I was moving so fast it was over in a pinch. I ended up having a 50 minute PR on my IM marathon split with almost a 2 hour overall PR. I couldn't be happier and finally felt like I have put in a good quality smart race. Throughout the race I got a ton of Rev3 shout outs which I loved. It was the best motivation out there.
Super special thank you to my boo, who provided endless support leading up to the race and was the best sherpa anyone can have! Huge thank you to my coach, JP, who led me through what can sometimes be an endless tunnel of doom. Big thank you to those who were out there supporting me on the course and cheering me on at home. I was great to know my friends were thinking of me and provided such a great boost in those rough spots. I could of never have pulled this off without all of them. I was extra thankful this Thanksgiving!
I am enjoying the off season, but already busy with remolding the kitchen and the holidays! Thinking about running soon if I can fit it in, but in no rush. Pictures to come of the progress!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Nutrition Plan for IMAZ

My nutrition has been a little bit of a struggle for me this year. This is clear as it has taken me awhile to finalize this. I started this post on 8/29/12 so I could develop it over the course of my training and have it dialed in exactly to the best nutrition plan possible. I was having a hard time find stuff that was appetizing to me while training. I am the opposite of someone with a sweet tooth. I love savory foods so finding something to eat in the world of sweet gels and sugary bars was hard.

Breakfast: 800-1000 Calories from moderate to low glycemic index foods 3 to 4 hours prior
Oatmeal w/ milk, brown sugar, butter (1 cup dry =300 Calories); 2x Banana (200 Calories); Powerbar Ironman Perform (70); English muffin w/ PB and Honey (260 calories).

Pre-Race: 200 Calories/hour in the last 3 hours, Liquids
Powerbar Harvest Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Bar (250 Calories), Water

Swim: Nothing

Bike: 350 calories per hour on the bike. Drink water before starting any calories. Beginning to sip right away out of T1 and continue for 20 minutes. Every hour on the bike I plan to eat: 1/2 banana (50 calories), 1/2 powerbar (115 calories) Powerbar Energy Blasts (190 calories). And a salt tab every other hour. Every hour on the bike I plan to drink: 20 oz of water (Shiv bladder) and 15 oz of Gatorade (half my aero drink). Chase each mouthful of solid with 2 to 3 mouthfuls of water.

Run: Get in at least 200 Calories per hour. Every hour on the run I plan to eat: 1/2 banana (50 calories), 1 Gel (110 calories), and get the remaining calories from coke. Every hour on the run I plan to drink: 10 oz water and 10 oz coke. When using gels, follow with water. I may or may not mix in some oranges and pretzels depending on how I feel. I also play to take a salt tab every other hour.

My motto for the weekend will be from the legendary triathlete, Scott Molina, "When you feel good, eat."

If you see me on the course, don't shout good job, please shout EAT!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Packing! Did I miss anything?

I am planning on starting to pack but am having some anxiety. See my list below and let me know if I am missing anything.

Morning Clothes Bag:
Swimsuit top
Rev3 Pearl Izumi tri shorts
tinted goggles
Trislide -Move to Run Gear in AM after applying
2x water bottles -Fill bike in AM
baggie of Powerbar Perform
electrical tape -Put on bike in AM
bike nutrition: 2x Powerbar Energy gels
bike pump
flip flops
Garmin -Put on bike in AM

Bike Gear Bag:
hr strap
Rev3 Pearl Izumi Elite Bike Jersey
nutrition in jersey pockets: Powerbars, gels, salt tablets
Pearl Izumi Tri Fly IV Carbon bike shoes
sun glasses

On bike:
bladder (water)
aero drink (Powerbar Perform)
rubber bands (x3)
saddle bag; spare tube, multi tool, levers
Garmin holder

Bike Special Needs Bag:
Swiftwick socks
spare tire
spare tub
extra food -TBD (fig newtons, peanut butter filled pretzels, oreos, etc)
salt tablets

Run Gear Bag:
Rev3 T-shirt
Rev3 Pearl Izumi Tri Top
Lululemon black tank
running shoes
Swiftwick socks
Rev3 Wisconsin Dells Visor
race belt w number
nutrition: Powerbar Energy gels

Run Special Needs Bag:
salt tablets
long sleeve dry fit
extra food-TBD (fig newtons, peanut butter filled pretzels, oreos, etc)

messenger bag (carry-on)
eye shades
cell phone/charger
Epi pen
Garmin charger
temporary tattoos
checklist/athlete guide
pill bottle (benadryl, sudafed, ibuprofen, midol)

swim suit
dirty bike towel
Rev3 sling bag
plastic baggies
sunscreen/face sunscreen
arm warmers?
cycling kit
normal clothes

Any suggestions on how to pack a bike pump?

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Season is almost over!

Although the major task is still at hand I can't but help myself and think about what I am going to do when I have that extra time on my hands.

-Getting pretty. I need a haircut and eyebrow wax bad!
-Not having to think about hitting my workouts. Just getting out there and enjoying the feel.
-Lots of cross training. I love to do it but seem to never have time for it when the mileage ramps up.
-Housework. Crazy I know, but we are currently renovating our kitchen and I want to be able to put some hard work and focus on it. I also want to catch up on cleaning.
-Sleeping In
-Watching movies
-Catching up with friends.
-Taking walks; hopefully before it snows.

It seems like everyone else is really enjoying the time off. For me it is right around the corner!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

"A" race plan

11 days to go! For my "B" race this year I mapped everything out ahead of time down to every last detail I could control. This helped me significantly by staying focused on what I have focused so much on already and not getting caught up in all the shiny things at the expo. Yes it is a little over the edge for most, but it is what works for me. I am not going to toss in the towel or cry myself to sleep if everything doesn't go as planned. I like to think of it as an outline. Feel free to comment if I blatantly forgot anything or recommendations on can't miss places in the Tempe area.

Thursday, November 15

Swim/Shower: 7:45 AM
Leave for airport: 9:45 AM

Have packed lunch for airport!

Flight Departs DTW: 11:15 AM
Flight Arrives PHX: 1:40 PM

Eric Departs DTW: 12:05 PM
Eric Arrives PHX: 2:30 PM

Grocery Shop (Safeway): 3:15 PM
Hotel Check In/Unpack: 4:30 PM
Shake Out Run or Easy Hike Optional/Stretch (:45)/Shower: 5:30 PM
Dinner (Edamame/top sirloin Steak Stir Fry w carrots, celery, water chestnuts, mushrooms, onion, broccoli /Quinoa/Yogurt& Raspberries): 6:30 PM
Read: 8:30 PM
Bedtime: 9:00 PM

Friday, November 16

Wake Up: 9:00 AM
Stretch/Roll: 9:30 AM
Breakfast (Hotel): 10:00 AM
Bike Build: 10:30 AM
Athlete Check In/Packet Pick Up: 11:30

Lunch options (12:15 PM): Cornish Pasty Co, Essence Bakery, Green, or Udupi Cafe 

Hotel/Chill/Movie: 1:30-4:30 PM
Organize Bags: 4:30-5:30 PM
Athlete Dinner: 5:30 PM (Eric drops off)

Laura Departs TVC: 1:35 PM
Laura Arrives PHX: 7:10 PM (Eric picks up; then comes to get us at athlete dinner)

Hotel: 8:30 PM
Sleep: 9:30 PM

Saturday, November 17

Wake Up: 8:00 AM
Breakfast (Hotel): 8:30 AM
Swim: 9:30 AM
Bike: 10:30 AM

Lunch options (11:30 AM): La Bocca Pizzeria or Med Fresh Grill 

Finalize Gear Bags: 1:00
Check In Gear Bags/Bike: 2:00 PM
Dinner (Salad/Baked Breaded Chicken Thighs/Pasta w/ Parm Cheese/Roasted Brussel Sprouts and Mushrooms/Yogurt&Fruit): 6:00 PM

Sunday, November 18 RACE DAY

Wake Up/Stretch: 5:00 AM
Breakfast: Oatmeal w/ milk, brown sugar, butter; Banana; Powerbar Ironman Perform; English muffin w/ PB and Honey. Powerbar Harvest Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Bar
Leave Hotel: 5:45 AM Pump tires, last minute bag items, etc.
Water: 6:45 AM
Race Start: 7:00 AM

Swim: Pace: At the 13th buoy want to be under 30 mins. 

T1: Bike jersey w/nutrition, bike shoes, adjust timing chip, take off watch, trislide, heart rate monitor, sunscreen.

Bike: Start Garmin! Pace: 19.5 mph, Garmin will be set to 15:23 per 5 miles and also the markers below. Paces below are for middle and end of loops.


T2: Trislide, Tank or t-shirt, socks, run shoes, race belt, garmin.

Run: Reset Garmin! Pace: 9:10 min/mile. Garmin will be set to alert at markers below. Paces below are for middle and end of loops.


Monday, November 19
Celebration Day/Ironman Store: 7 AM/9AM

Flight Departs PHX: 1:30 PM
Flight Arrives DTW: 7:18 PM

Eric Departs PHX: 11:00 AM
Eric Arrives DTW: 4:48 PM

Laura Departs PHX: 11:15 AM
Laura Arrives TVC: 8:30 PM

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Operation: Optimal Health

19 days to go until my big race and of course I get sick! I spent the weekend freaking out a little bit since I was off in my workouts followed by a couple rest days. I am pretty sure my body does not respond like the average person and maybe even to the average athlete. Every day I am taking a boat load of vitamins to avoid getting sick so when I am sick it doesn't necessarily appear as the common cold. I had a sore throat but I just get exhausted and feel it in my muscles more than anything. I believe that I am on the up swing with being back on the bike and back in the pool, but since I only have 19 days left until my "A" race I am going to do everything possible to get myself in optimal health. Not just back to okay health, I am talking optimal.

1. Eating! Lots of smoothies and lemons! I intend to surge with vegetables and fruits in my diet.

2. Sleep. I have been having trouble sleeping the last week and a half and am starting to think it is what started the whole thing. I don't know what happened. I was knocking out workouts and then was knocked out at bed time, but lately I have been restless and distracted. I am going to give melatonin a try. I have tried it before it half pills and it seemed to do the job so I won't be introducing anything new into my system completely  but this will help me get some good solid sleep.

3. Stretching and Rolling. This is not so focused on the sickness at hand, but I said optimal health and I want to be loose as a goose come race day.

4. Stress. Work has been a downer lately so I am going to make sure I check the negativity coming in and going out the door.

All of these are probably things I should of prioritized throughout the season, but when you are putting in large training blocks it becomes close to impossible. Still no reason not to make a late season push. Any other recommendations on how to recoup from getting sick in the midst of your season are appreciated.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Ulman Rev3 Half Full Triathlon

This weekend, last weekend and the weekend before various triathlons around the world took places of different distances, sizes, and capacities. I was scheduled to race at the Ullman/Rev3 Half Full triathlon in Columbia, Maryland on October 7th. Unfortunately, due to some last minute engagements and weddings I was not able to attend and was truly disappointed. If you know me, you know I would usually have skipped the weddings for such a great race and cause but these were of close friends and I don't have many of those.

Reason #5: Lance. He is a legend no matter how you look at it. No matter how many bad things I hear about him he still associates himself with a good cause and that I give him credit. People can argue he does it for the wrong reasons and its all about self interest, but no matter how you cut it, he still has given light to an important cause. If you have seen anyone wither away from cancer you will understand this.

Rev3, Charlie, making Lance suffer, in jeans and a hoodie.
Reason #4: I really wanted one of these guys! I love crab. Pretty much what it comes down to.

Owly Images
Rev3 has the coolest medals!
Reason #3: This is my old stomping ground. I used to live in the area and would ride this course on a weekly basis. If you want to be a stronger biker this is the course to ride. It is technical and hilly. It is also absolutely gorgeous.
Best riding in eastern Maryland.
Reason #2: My Rev3 teammates and the Rev3 staff. I really was disappointed I didn't get to hang out with the Rev3 team. From what I hear it was a fun and epic weekend as always.
The Rev3 team rallying the night before the race.
Reason #1: The cause. "Its about doing something that's bigger than you, its about taking your life back, its about being involved, its about being healthy."

I will be at this race next year whether it is to race or help out. I highly recommend adding it to your race calendar for next year and can guarantee you it will not disappoint. 

Monday, October 1, 2012

Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness

After Rev3 Cedar Point a vacation was needed. My man and I decided to go on an adventure instead. We traveled to northern Minnesota to enter into the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in hopes of some northern lights and relaxation time. We got the relaxation time, but didn't see any northern lights. Maybe next time! Here is our adventure in pictures.
All set to go. The canoe's size was a little intimidating. 
Eric's pack. Throughout the week I kept taking stuff out of his pack and putting it in mine. He was carrying the canoe so  he had enough to handle.
Before picture. Right before our first portage where I ended up knee deep in muke trying to get our canoe in the water. The fun begins!
I think this is from Day 1. You can see in the background damages from the blow down of '99.
Pretty water lily.

Having fun on Day 1.
The start of one of the portages.
Same portage.
Campsite view Day 1. Pretty nice set up.
Setting up dinner.
Relaxing by the fire.

Day 2: Moose! We tried not to get too close!

This picture is with the Mother right before she went off into the woods where we couldn't see her. All we could do was listen to her stomp around. We were both were really nervous.
Getting closer to the baby moose.
So adorable.
I know mother moose can be really aggressive but we later found out that moose can swim really fast too. I am glad we didn't stick around for long.
This is middle of Day 2 where we got stuck on a really windy lake.  After a couple of failed attempts trying to get around a bend we parked the canoe and hiked to a campsite on the other end of the peninsula. 
The campers we ran into said there was a great hike to the top with an overwhelming view.  How could we not go inspect?
Climbing up to the top.

Climbing up and up.

Almost there!
It was really sunny that day and I got majorly sun burnt.

This was the last picture we took before we tipped the canoe. Luckily we didn't have any of a gear, but also some what unfortunate that we didn't have any of our gear because it weighted down the canoe!
The sunset the evening we were drying out from tipping over. The camera was gone, but Eric had to turn on his i-phone to get this shot. It was even better in person.
Day 4: Taking a break after our second to last portage. This one was one of the hardest. Long and super steep. Eric was a champ. 
Almost to a warm shower.
Eric relaxing after the portage.

We made it out alive and still speaking to each other. It was a wonderful trip with lots of stories to tell.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Cedar Point Photo Gallery

Photo credit to my man and sherpa for the day.

You would think it was really early in the morning, but this was taken at 8:30 in the AM.
Ryan and Jeff

My boy Zach! Go Green!

I think this is Ryan.

Skipping joyfully out of the water.
Trying to get my feet in.

Heidi getting after it.
This would be me struggling early,
Zach finishing.

Heidi finishing.
Elizabeth kicking it in!
Jeff is stoked. First HIM.

What is going on with my hair?